As you can imagine, it was a rough day for everyone in WWE today as everyone is coming to grips with the company’s decision to release people from different departments as part of budget cuts related to COVID-19.
I was told that the morale at WWE offices in Stamford, CT is at an all-time low with some worried that they could be next if WWE is still not able to run live events within the next couple of months. The death of Howard Finkel also hit everyone hard as he was loved by everyone that knew him. I was told that Finkel was being paid by the company even when he was dealing with health issues. He suffered a stroke a couple of years ago and his health continued to decline.
A WWE source told PWInsider that the feeling is that at least 40% of the company was gone after Wednesday. As noted, there were many more employees that were let go that have not been made public. PWInsider cited four different people saying that they have some form of “survivor’s guilt” after seeing so many co-workers let go.
The word at WWE is that people in the company are now wearing different hats so they have more on their plate and the live events division was hit hard.
The wrestlers who were let go will be free to work for another wrestling company on July 17th as there is a 90-day non-compete with all of the main roster releases. The employees have been furloughed until July 1.
Many of the released employees are hoping they will be brought back but I spoke to one who is already moving on and another is looking at transitioning into a different career field because the reality is that some employees may not be brought back. Wrestlers were told that the door is open for them to return at one point but, just like the employees, it’s unknown how many will end up back with the company.
Click here for the updated list of names that were released on Wednesday.